Film documents LaGrange High School history

By By Alex Onken / American Press

LaGrange High School students, past and present, came together Tuesday to look back at the school’s 110-year history, as told

by a documentary put together by a group of students.

The documentary’s premiere event, which took place in the library, also featured a display of yearbooks, photos, news articles

and fashions from decades past.

“It’s interesting to be able to go

through all the archives and see all the people who have gone here and

how much history

(there is) in the school. It’s really cool,” said Aaron Johnston, a

student who worked on the documentary. “You look through

old yearbooks and see how the style has changed. The way that

people dress and talk has changed.”

“A lot of the students just jumped into

it and just started researching, contacting previous people who went to

LaGrange,

alumni and contacting a local historian. They got some really good

information that was enlightening to the different decades

we went through,” said Shelly Buller, LaGrange teacher.

“It (the project) awakened a whole new sense of pride in their school and with their history,” said Liz Domingue, a class

of ’96 graduate who is now a teacher at LaGrange.

The documentary featured notable alumni from the area, such as Mayor Randy Roach; Jim Beam, former editor of the American Press, and Nomica Guillory, 2006 Mrs. Louisiana America.

Also featured in the project was local historian Nola Mae Ross, who died shortly after her participation in the project.

Since Francois LaGrange opened the school in 1903, different generations of students have faced the task of learning during

world wars, the Great Depression, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Sept. 11, and the war in Afghanistan.

“There were savings bonds and scrap metal drives. Everybody was very, very patriotic,” said Sara Brasher, class of ’45, of

her time in school during the Second World War

LaGrange’s current location opened its doors on Sept. 7, 1954. “This was country. Just a couple of blocks away right off of

Kirkman, we had milk cows that roamed in this area for pasture. This was very rural, and now this is middle of town, more

or less,” said Kenneth Abrahams, class of ’56. “Our class was the second class to graduate from the new building.”

“For the students, I think they’ve come to the realization that they’re not in this little time period” said Domingue.

“You know that they’re connected to

something larger; that there is a historical presence to our school, and

that there was

a time before Interstate 210. There were loads of people who were

majorettes and played football who became nurses, became

doctors and became attorneys. As adults, we know those things, but

sometimes in high school, you don’t see out of that realm.”

“Take pride in LaGrange,” said coach Jules Sullen in the documentary. “It’s your home away from home.”